November 9 – My Late Grandmother’s 100th Birthday

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Tomorrow, November 9, would have been the 100th birthday of my maternal grandmother, Frances Guido, who died in 2002. (To the right is a picture of her in the 1930s when she served as her niece's sponsor for Confirmation. Below is a picture of my Grandmother and my sister, Lizzie, from the early 1980s, standing on the stoop of my Grandma's Brooklyn home). In Return to Rome, I write about my Grandmother and the years I lived with her (1984-1987) while I was studying for my PhD at Fordham … [Read more...]

My cousin Tony Sclafani’s new book: Grateful Dead FAQ: All That’s Left to Know About the Greatest Jam Band in History

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My cousin Tony Sclafani recently published a book, Grateful Dead FAQ: All That's Left to Know About the Greatest Jam Band in History (Backbeat Books, 2013). Here's a summary of it: The Grateful Dead rose out of San Francisco's 1960s underground rock scene with an unprecedented sound and image. The group's members were steeped in rock, folk, classical, and blues, and their instrumental prowess and refusal to bow to commercial conventions helped originate jam band music. Unapologetic in their ad … [Read more...]

Riley Beckwith’s Valedictorian Address

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My niece, Riley Jane Beckwith, as I have already noted, was named a National Merit Finalist, earned a full ride to the University of Dallas (beginning in Fall 2013), and is the 2013 Dayton High School valedictorian. What follows is the text of her valedictorian address, which she delivered in Dayton, Nevada on May 30, 2013: 2013 Dayton High School Valedictorian Address by Riley J. BeckwithThe title of valedictorian demands that I give some sort of wisdom to the rest of my class, which is, … [Read more...]

My niece, Riley Beckwith, named National Merit Finalist, receives full ride to U. of Dallas, and is Dayton High School valedictorian.

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I'm very proud of my niece, Riley Beckwith, who graduates tomorrow from Dayton High School (Nevada) as its valedictorian. Here's an article about her from this morning's Reno Gazette-Journal: Dayton High School senior Riley Beckwith has been named a National Merit Finalist Scholarship recipient, the most prestigious and highly competitive award given through the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.Beckwith, the Dayton High Class of 2013 Valedictorian, has also accepted the … [Read more...]

Honoring my mother-in-law, Peggy Dickerson

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My mother-in-law, Peggy Dickerson, died two years ago today, on January 27, 2010. My wife misses her so much. What follows is the text of the eulogy I delivered at her memorial service. Eternal rest, grant unto her O Lord and let perpetual light shine upon them her. I would like to now say a few words about my mother-in-law, Peggy Dickerson. She was born August 31, 1924 in Los Angeles, California. She was one of three children of Frankie Bernice and Andrew Buchanan Gardenhire.But it was in … [Read more...]

Honoring My Father and Mother on their 52nd Anniversary

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That is the title of my latest entry over at The Catholic Thing. Here is how it begins: Although we celebrate anniversaries on wedding dates, I am not writing to celebrate a wedding. That would be like ending the baseball season right after President Obama throws out the first pitch on opening day.No, I am writing to celebrate a marriage, one that, if they make it to next Monday, will have lasted fifty-two years. To give you an idea how long that is, it’s about 27,349,336 minutes, or 4 … [Read more...]

Happy 81st Birthday to my Dad!

Today, May 25, 2011, my father, Harold J. Beckwith, turns 81!  To the right is a picture of my Dad, me, and my brother Jim in front of our Mercedes Benz with Caesar's Palace in the background.  We were at Caesar's having lunch following my First Holy Communion in May 1968. At the bottom left is a picture of me, my wife, Frankie, and my parents last November in Las Vegas. Here is what I say about my father in Return to Rome: Confessions of An Evangelical Catholic: We lived pretty standard Ame … [Read more...]

Today would have been my father-in-law’s 91st birthday

Joseph A. Dickerson, Jr. died in May 2006 at the age of 86. Today would have been his 91st birthday. My wife, Frankie, still misses him, as she misses her mother, Peggy, who passed away in January 2010. At 5:30 pm today at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Waco, Mass will be said for the repose of Joe's soul. What follows is the eulogy I delivered at his memorial service: … [Read more...]


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